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C.O.A.T. - AmeriCorps
Conquering Opioid Abuse Together

In 2016, Drug and alcohol-related deaths claimed nearly 2,100 lives in Maryland which is the largest total in state history. State health officials attributed 89% of those deaths to opioid-related causes leading Gov. Larry Hogan to declare a state-of-emergency in March 2017.  

On August 4, 2017, the Maryland Department of Health released data for fatal overdoses in the first quarter of 2017. During this period, which encompasses January to March of 2017, there were 550 overdose-related deaths in the state, including 372 fentanyl-related deaths indicating the problem showed no signs of retreat. In August 2017, Frostburg State University was awarded an AmeriCorps targeted priority grant by the Corporation for National and Community Service to launch Western Maryland’s Conquering Opiate Abuse Together (C.O.A.T.) program in partial response to this growing epidemic.

The C.O.A.T. program currently funds nine new AmeriCorps positions, eight part-time and one full-time, who are placed at various sites in Maryland’s westernmost counties, Allegany, Frederick, Garrett and Washington. AmeriCorps members serving under the COAT program will work within their assigned communities to assist in providing resources and programming to individuals currently battling opiate addiction while also offering education and support to community members affected by this crisis. Resource distribution includes open community outreach programs, guest speakers, individual-level interactions, group-level interactions, information hotlines, clearinghouses, as well as presentations in schools and online outlets.

C.O.A.T. AmeriCorps members may be students or individuals with no previous connection to FSU or AmeriCorps.

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